There is an argument that once the manufacturing leaves the design follows.
We are definitely seeing the rise of Greater China as a significant design entity since chip manufacturing started to migrate there. Meanwhile we are seeing European design start to struggle. Note the linked examples of Nokia and ST-Ericsson.
It is because VCs are not putting money in to semiconductor startups that the European Commission is getting involved, but as indicated before that is being done under a different program due to start in 2014.
I think Europe should focus on semi product design not manufacturing. The vast majority of semi companies are fabless for good reasons. I suspect a lot of the US semi production is a actually done in Asia anyway. A previous comment stated only SMIC and TSMC are able to make money from semi production. More EU money won't change that significantly.
A good proposal. Atleast the EU is taking some steps. As adapteva has said, a sizable portion of this fund should go towards funding high quality startups. Even if they build a single fab, that should do I suppose.
Indeed - that's where Giorgio Cesana, FD-SOI mover & shaker at ST got his degree. They have a big analog/power team there, too (see http://www.advancedsubstratenews.com/2011/04/smart-power-saves-power/ , for example).
Also VCs are not putting money into fabless companies irrespective of whether the EC is one of their LPs or not
Andreas knows this very well
The only thing that will fix the semiconductor market is to feed large amounts of the tax take on semiconductor enabled products back into fabs and fabless companies
Don't hold your breath
Bottom line Ä6B would not even pay for one wafer fab at the geometries relevant over the next 7 years and 700M/yr over 7 years is a drop in the ocean.
What is required if the EC wants to account for 20% of global wafer starts is something like the Mega project in the mid 80s along with structural changes in the tax regieme to make it viable to build wafer fabs in Europe